The boys found a field mouse family’s
burrow beneath one of their tents.
The mother ran under a bush to watch
as the scouts inspected the shallow trench.
In the earth she’d made a careful nest,
laid with cotton fluff and fine, dry grass
for the naked body of a birth-blind pup,
which chirped as it searched for her in the dirt.
I covered the place with a piece of bark,
and whispered to boys to step away and watch
the mother come back from where she’d fled.
They crushed her pup with a rock instead.
Hatred of a race,
has rallied millions under its banners
in ways we are ashamed
to think or talk about.
It has formed nations,
showered wealth on victors,
heaped sorrows on the unfortunate,
hollowed untold graves for both,
and filled them
with thier sons and daughters.
just as many.
Perhaps love and hatred
are equally matched
because they are extremes
of the exact same emotion.